Sunday, April 22, 2007

I have blogged about this so many times before that by now half the people using the internet probably know that Iam speaking at Jazoon'2007. However, I have the Jazoon logo which I thought would be nice to add to my blog. So Iam including the logo of Jazoon together with a link to their site below. Just follow the image link and scroll down to session no.660 to read more about the paper Iam presenting at the conference.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Finally the super-8 rounds are over and the teams that will be facing off in the semi-finals has been decided. It will be Aus vs S.Africa and N.zealand vs S.Lanka.
There is some talk whether what S.Lanka did was right. i.e resting key players against a tough opponent like Australia. They probably felt that this way they would qualify second and meet N.zealand in the semis instead of Australia. They were well within their rights to rest their players at any stage of the tournament irrespective of whethey they had qualified or not. The motto should always be play to win though the Australians seem to carry that a bit far at times. But sometimes caution is the better part of valour.
The competitive spirit still is present in this world cup also. In 2003, the semifinals was far more interesting than the finals where the ozzies drubbed India. Even in the football world-cup, the semi-finals were more interesting than the finals atleast until the materazzi incident livened things up. In Tennis, you often see Federer facing off with Roddick in the semis to pick up a facile win over an unseeded finalist in the final round. So don't underestimate the power and intensity of the semis.
Someone was grumbling the world wasn't the same without India and Pakistan. Both their campaigns if narrated would put a greek tragedy to shame. The world cup has still had its fare share of moments both on and off the field I would say. W.Indies approach and performance makes you think if they were serious contenders at all. They manage to qualify by the skin of their teeth and their batsmen took you back to the days of test cricket whem run-rates of 2.5 runs per over was the norm. Brian Lara didn't help his teams cause by taking the powerplay from the 45-49th overs either. Of late, some merit is being seen in holding back the powerplays until a set batsman has gone back. But to hold it back till the 45th over is stretching things a bit. What difference does it make if the runs are scored in the 39th over when they opponent is only 2 down and have 7 more players to whack the ball around near the end.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Does a rehash count as a sequel?

I am referring to the film 102 dalmations from walt disney pictures. I had seen 101 dalmations before and found it great. Hoping to have a similar viewing experience, I went and rented out the 102 dalmations. Guess what? 102 Dalmations is a rehash of 101 Dalmations with a few minor changes here and there. In fact, it was like watching 101 dalmations all over again. And the reason struck me only later. Most of the scenes were the same as well. The disney company had used footage from the original in this movie also shooting only a few extra scenes to make the movie look different. Does this count as a sequel. Especially when you consider the large sums being spent on the batman and pirates of the caribbean movies. Imagine the plight of those who purchased tickets to watch this so called sequel and rented out the DVD. If someone did a video diff betwen the original and the sequel, I am sure the difference would be not more than 10 or 15%. Such is the amount of reuse. Seriously Disney folks ought to consider refunding my money back.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Is Ruby designed to run only on Linux?

Iam forced to ask this question because of what I have seen from the little I have worked with Ruby. The Ruby core itself installs and runs fine on windows. Its only when you want to install some gems that the problem arises. The command to install the gem is

c:\>ruby gem install

This failed with the message that 'NMake' was not found. I checked on the net and found a link at where I could download 'NMake'. After I downloaded and copied 'NMake' to 'c:\ruby\bin', the error I got was 'cl' was not found. If I remember correctly 'cl' is the microsoft C compiler. I tried to replace 'nmake' with make and cl with gcc by downloading cygwin. But I couldn't figure out the place where I would change 'nmake' to 'make' since most of the files seem to be generated files. So the gem install process overwrites my changes. This is what has caused me to pose the question above which is

"Is ruby designed to run only on linux?"

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

What's the good framework for developing a web 2.0 application?

This is a question that I have been asking myself for sometime now. First of all, I wasn't sure whether a web application was such a good idea since I had spent most of last year working with thick clients. So for the moment, Iam setting aside this question, to be able to objectively decide which framework would be the best for data oriented projects. I am saying data oriented because if it were a text editor or had lots of charts, graphs etc, a thick client would win hands down. So the project has to be such that both a thick client as well as a web application can handle. With RIAs the gap between thick and thin clients has definitely narrowed down. This should only aid us in our evaluation.
Let's take a sample project for our evaluation. Since there are a number of web component frameworks available, let's assume we will be using one such component. The Tree component would be a good component to use. The data for the tree itself could be something hierarchical like an organization hierarchy. A requirement of 'Shenandoah corp' could be to get each employee to fill in a questionnaire. So for each employee, a form has to be presented and their inputs taken and then stored in the database. Soem fields in the form might require interfacing with the company's databse in DB2 which might require a web service call to be made. Since the budget for this project is low, the entire development has to be completed in 1 man month. The company also has plans to showcase the application to their customers which would imply that the application be web 2.0. It wuld therefore have to use Ajax and provide the same experience as visiting a site like digg, flickr etc. With the above in mind, let's proceed to narrow down the tool/api/frameork to use to implement this. To begin with, the available frameworks are as follows:

1. Flex 2
2. Wicket
3. Ruby on rails
4. GWT
5. J2EE
6. Seam
7. Struts

Since Ajax is needed, no 5 and no 7 are eliminated right away unless some means of Ajaxifying j2ee and struts is available. The rest are all even contenders which leaves us with nos:

1. Flex2
2. Wicket
3. Ruby on Rails
4. GWT
6 Seam

the eighth ofcourse being the Swing based thick client.

Who won the race and which framework was finally chosen to build the application. Watch this space to know the ending.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Modern day ten commandments:

1. Thou shall not download movies/music on to DVDs/CDs
2. Thou shall not jump the line at ticket counters
3. Thou shall not run the red signal at every opportunity
4. Thou shall not check your email 20 times every hour
5. Thou shall know the difference between a blog, a wiki and a podcast
6. Thou shall not talk on your mobile while driving
7. Thou shall not party for days without a break
8. Thou shall embrace open source at some level
9. Thou shall learn to live without your blackberry
10. Thou shall not go to bed with your ipod